Andrew Wade IV, his wife Charlotte Wade, and their two-year-old daughter would have seemed the ideal neighbors in the new suburbs springing up around Louisville, as elsewhere, in the 1950s. The Wades were a traditional, middle-class, young, nuclear family. Andrew, a college-educated Navy veteran and certified electrician in business with his father, had saved money to purchase his family’s dream home. Charlotte, a homemaker, had her heart set on a new, stone, ranch-style house away from the city so the children—little Rosemary and the baby on the way—would have more space to play.

But the Wades had two obstacles standing in the way of their dream. First, they were, to use 1954 terms, Negroes. Second, they weren’t complacent. They knew they could have selected a home from the old, deteriorating, in-town housing stock available to blacks in the Jim Crow era, but they wanted their children to have the best. They wanted the same options an educated, middle-class, white family would have had, but every time they found a suburban home, the deal met some obstacle.

Though Charlotte was not particularly interested in causes, Andrew had been involved in a number of progressive organizations that challenged segregation. Still, his motivation was to provide a home for his family. The Wades neither set out nor wanted to be the open housing pioneers they would become.

Wade - Deed

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Additional Sources

Housing segregation today still exists
Paul A. Jargowsky- “Poverty and Place: Ghettos, Barrios, and the “American City.
Poverty And Place: Ghettos, Barrios, And The American City documents the geographic spread of the nation's ghettos and shows how economic shifts have had a particularly devastating impact on certain regions, particularly in the "rust-belt" states of the Midwest. Paul Jargowsky's thoughtful analysis of the causes of ghetto formation clarifies the importance of widespread urban trends, particularly those changes in the labor and housing markets that have fostered income inequality and segregated the rich from the poor. Jargowsky also examines the sources of employment that do exist for ghetto dwellers, and describes how education and family structure further limit their prospects. Poverty And Place sets forth the facts necessary to inform the public understanding of the growth of concentrated poverty, and confronts essential questions about how the spiral of urban decay in our nation's cities can be reversed. Poverty And Place is a valuable contribution for today's national political dialogue on welfare reform, education reform, immigration issues, the growing "permanent underclass", and related social issues as they reflect themselves in the ghettos and barrios of contemporary American cities.”- Midwest Book Review
Meyer, Stephen Gran. “As Long as They Don’t Move Next Door: Segregation and Racial Conflict in American Neighborhoods.
The most important fact we rarely admit in talking about segregation and poverty” by Emily Badger
America’s big race lie: How big banks and racist policies helped shape segregation, police brutality” by Richard Rothstein
Cate Fosl interview with Christopher Gastinger